The crimson globe in the west disappeared behind the dark horizon over the two Fryup valleys, and left the world in twilight. But it would not be dark for an hour, and except for mistaking the sheep for boulders and boulders for sheep, and being consequently surprised when what I had imagined was a mass of gray stone suddenly disappeared on my approach, nothing unusual happened. I had no fear of losing my way, but what my map had led me to believe would be a plain road was a mere track in the heather, and at times it became too indistinct to follow easily. Lealholm Station lay in the valley on my right, but I could find no road leading there, and I wasted precious time in frequent consultations with the map. Coming to a farm, I inquired the way, and was directed over a number of muddy fields, which gradually brought me down into the valley. It was now sufficiently dark for all the landmarks I had noticed to be scarcely visible, but, on inquiring at a cottage, I was told that it would take only ten minutes to walk to the station. I had a clear quarter of an hour, and, hurrying forward, soon found myself on a railway-bridge over a deep cutting. There was just enough light to see that no station was in sight, and it was impossible to find in which direction the station lay. There was no time to go back to the cottage, and there were no others to be seen. Looking at the map again, I could not discover the position of this bridge, for it was on no road, as it seemed merely to connect the pastures on either side. However, I felt fairly certain that I had rather overstepped the station, and therefore climbed down the bank into the cutting, and commenced walking towards the west. Coming out into the open, I thought I saw the lamps on the platforms about half a mile further on; but on pressing forward the lights became suddenly bigger, and in a minute my train passed me with a thundering rush. Evidently Lealholm was to the east, and not the west of that cutting. It was then 5.40, and the next train left for Whitby at about a quarter to ten. When the tail-lights of the train had disappeared into the cutting, I felt very much alone, and the silence of the countryside became oppressive. It seemed to me that this part of Yorkshire was just as lonely as when Canon Atkinson first commenced his work in Danby parish, and I was reminded of his friend’s remark on hearing that he was going there: ’Why, Danby was not found out when they sent Bonaparte to St. Helena, or else they never would have taken the trouble to send him all the way there!’
The ruined Danby Castle can still be seen on the slope above the Esk, but the ancient Bow Bridge at Castleton, which was built at the end of the twelfth century, was barbarously and needlessly destroyed in 1873. A picture of the bridge has, fortunately, been preserved in Canon Atkinson’s ‘Forty Years in a Moorland Parish.’ That book has been so widely read that it seems scarcely necessary to refer to it here, but without the help of the Vicar, who knew every inch of his wild parish, the Danby district must seem much less interesting.